ONE of the most powerful bankers in the world jetted into Bournemouth today to meet employees of his firm as it announced a big boost for the town.
Jamie Dimon, chairman, president and chief executive of JP Morgan, paid a visit to the Chaseside site as the banking giant announced a major investment into the town.
Mr Dimon whizzed into Bournemouth Airport earlier today for the visit, which was not made public in advance, as JP Morgan confirmed that it will be spending £28.6 million on improving Chaseside, which the Daily Echo reported yesterday.
He addressed all 4,000 staff in person and by video conference and conducted a question and answer session.
Mandy Payne, president of Bournemouth Chamber of Trade and Commerce, told the Echo: “It’s great news, it’s showing investment in the area and JP Morgan is very proud to support the area and it’s great to see them putting their feet down even further and securing those jobs.”
Tobias Ellwood, MP for Bournemouth East, added: “I visited the place only a few weeks ago and I’m delighted that JP Morgan is making the long term commitment for the town, not just for the staff, but also underlining the growing reputation that Bournemouth has for the financial services industry.
“I hope it will lead to other companies in the same industry matching this commitment.”
The bank says the new investment will give staff access to more state-of-the-art communications technology and equipment, enabling better interaction with colleagues in Europe, the US and Asia.
Speaking ahead of his visit, New York-based Mr Dimon said: “Bournemouth offers access to high quality talent and to facilities that can support our business, not just in London, but around the world.
“We are proud to be an active member of the Bournemouth community and to be the largest private sector employer in Dorset.”
JP Morgan has had offices in Bournemouth for 28 years, supporting client activities in 40 countries.
One member of staff said Mr Dimon had seemed “charismatic and honest” and had said he believed in straight talking.
Another said that Mr Dimon spoke about his vision for the company for around an hour.
When asked about how he gauged a successful business, he said: “You can be big and stupid. It’s not just about profits, it’s about the people, about technology, but you have to be financially successful in order for you to be able to do the other things”.
Mr Dimon told employees that markets and profits went up and down “but quality had to be there all the time”.
Jamie Dimon’s career
Jamie Dimon is JP Morgan Chase’s chairman, president and chief executive.
He became the bank’s president and chief operating officer following the merger in 2004 of JP Morgan Chase’s and Bank One Corporation, where he had been chairman and chief executive.
The 58-year-old New Yorker graduated from Tufts University in 1978 and received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1982. His pay for 2013 was 20million US dollars – £12.1m – consisting of $1.5million in salary and $18.5million in shares.